With winter sneaking in and frost in the air it’s time to start thinking about getting your garden ready for the cold nights and dark days. Your garden will be closing for the winter and with spring in the distance it is never too soon to get your garden prepared.
At this time of the year it is important to prune your trees, shrubs and herbaceous as per their individual requirements to ensure further healthy grow and better flowering next year. Some plants should not be pruned though. For example, Ribes and Forsythia. Plant hardy Cyclamen, Ivy, Skimmia and evergreen Grasses such as Carex to add colour to your garden. Plant these in winter containers and place them in prominent places where they can be seen and enjoyed by all. This will brighten up your garden on the dark winter days. To be one step ahead you could get a head start by planting some bulbs ready for Spring. This will allow you to enjoy watching your garden blossom when March comes around, planting Tulip bulbs are a nice and easy swing into spring. The bright colours will make winter feel like a distant memory.
Sheds and greenhouses:
Getting your greenhouse and shed ready for winter is as important as your garden. Making sure your greenhouse is cleaned out thoroughly, both inside and out. Washing the glass, the floor and the staging with disinfectant is important as it will kill any overwintering pests and diseases. Chose a dry day to clear out your garden shed in preparation for spring. Making sure you have a nice open space is important and will make gardening in the spring much easier. Check the security on your shed too, as you will visit it less at this time of the year than any other.
Loving the wildlife:
Winter is hard for the animals too; the cold temperatures catch them out. Making a pile of old logs in an unused corner of your garden will provide a great last minute shelter to hedgehogs or other wildlife. Leaving seeds and breadcrumbs for the animals to help them stock up their fat supplies for the winter. Cheese, crumbs, and bird seed will help species through the winter months.
• Check your fences and trellis, to make sure they are in a good condition, replacing or repairing any lose or damaged panels
• Ensure all fertilizers are stored in plastic containers to ensure they don’t absorb any moisture
• Use a moss killer to remove any algae or moss from block paving or patio.
Autumn can be a great time in the garden and if you need any advice on pruning or other gardening tasks, do get in touch.
Jason Harker is a professional gardener and landscaper. He is owner of JHPS-Gardens Ltd, covering North Staffordshire and South Cheshire. Contact Jason on 01782 396168 or online at www.jhps-gardens.co.uk.